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Alger County’s shop local campaign reaches $2M mark

With the recent holidays now behind us, we’re proud to announce the Alger County Chamber of Commerce had another successful year with its campaign that encourages people to spend their dollars locally.

Each year, Rekindle the Spirit — a festive event held in downtown Munising — takes place early December. Kids and families get their photos taken with Santa Claus and other holiday characters; there’s hot cocoa, the lighting of the tree, wagon rides and other activities; and downtown businesses often stay open later, sometimes offering sales. Although an event like Rekindle resembles holiday celebrations held in many other communities, the Rekindle Grand Giveaway is unprecedented.

Held between Thanksgiving through the week before Christmas, the Rekindle Grand Giveaway is a promotion where anyone who spends over $50 in Alger County gets an entry slip for a drawing to win various prizes. Shoppers bring their receipts to the Chamber’s office in downtown Munising or to Grand Marais Outfitters in Grand Marais where they’re tallied and entered in the drawing.

Since the campaign began in 2011, shoppers have brought in receipts totaling more than $2 million. Andrea Boucher of Munising received a collection of gift certificates valued at $200 in December for bringing in the receipt that helped the office reach the milestone.

Due to the generosity of local businesses for their donations and sponsorships, the Chamber was able to give over $6,000 worth of prizes and gift certificates to a total of 74 people in 2019.

Brook Murk of Munising won the grand prize which was an Ariens Deluxe 24-inch snow blower that was donated by Ariens, Madigan’s Ace Hardware and Pictured Rocks Cruises.

Although the Rekindle Grand Giveaway is a way to encourage and reward folks for shopping locally, it’s our hope that people continue to support small and local businesses. Happy New Year!

Editor’s note: Jaymie Depew is the communications and special project assistant for the Alger County Chamber of Commerce/Greater Munising Bay Partnership for Commerce Development, Munising Downtown Development Authority and Munising Visitors Bureau.